Mrs. Thomas Takes on Reading

Mrs. Thomas Takes on Reading

Asia Green and Jahir Araujo

The tall, pretty, blonde-haired Mrs. Joni Thomas taught Special Education, English, and Social Studies for fifteen years at Darby Junior High. Now, Mrs. Thomas has come to Kimmons as a reading interventionist.

“My goal is to help students learn the skills to become better readers and to enjoy reading as much as I do,” Mrs. Thomas said.

Jeans day is Mrs. Thomas’ favorite thing here so far.

“Anyone who knows me knows that I love to be able to wear all my favorite sneakers,” Mrs. Thomas said.

Mrs. Thomas has a bachelor’s degree in Social Studies Education from Arkansas Tech University and a master’s in Instructional Technology. This Van Buren native was first inspired to become a special education teacher when she worked at Perspectives Behavioral Health.

“Although it was a day treatment for students to receive mental health services, there were several students in my class with special education needs, too, and they inspired me,” Mrs. Thomas said.

The biggest challenge that Mrs. Thomas faces as a reading interventionist is teaching both virtual and in-person students at the same time.

“It’s harder to build relationships between students; however, it has been a great learning experience,” Mrs. Thomas said.

Outside of school, Mrs. Thomas enjoys spending time with family and traveling.

“I enjoy visiting new places. I also love to attend my sons’ soccer and flag football games,” Mrs. Thomas said.

A surprising fact about Mrs. Thomas is that she played volleyball.

“I played in junior high as well as high school,” Mrs. Thomas said. “I loved everything about the sport, especially playing the front row and blocking opponents.”